UPANZ Meeting

by admin on 07/08/2007

Today I’ve been to my first meeting of the New Zealand chapter of UPA (Usability Professionals’ Association), which was quite exiting. It was a lunch time meeting and some 30 people were there.

First speaker was Philip Fierlinger from Xero.com, who described the interaction design process used to create Xero, an online accounting software company that listed on the NZX earlier this year. He shared his insights into the different design techniques used to build such a complex online application quickly yet effectively.

Second speaker was Trent Mankelow, who visited the UPA conference in Austin/Texas in early June this year and made us all a bit envious by telling how much fun it was. We also learnt about an obscure kind of sports called Roller Derby, a kind of violent rollerskating rugby without ball (or is there a ball involved?). And yes, he learned some new stuff about usability and met all the cool people, too. I like Trent’s style of presenting, I recently watched one of his presentations online and find him very informative and entertaining at the same time, so I don’t get bored listening to him.

Unfortunately I didn’t talk to many people. Most knew each other and were in the middle of intensive talks that I didn’t want to interrupt. After the session there was not much time left to mingle, as my park-and-display time had run out and I didn’t have any more coins to feed the machine again. But I’ll be back for the next meetings, and hopefulle meet more nice people. It’s really cool to meet the guys in real life you usually know from reading their blogs, following their twitter feeds or watching them in old presentations… ;-)

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